Launching in the Spring, the £560m Multiply programme will give people who don’t have at least a GCSE grade C/4 or equivalent in maths access to free, flexible courses to improve their maths.
The new programme was announced by Chancellor Rishi Sunak in the October 2021 Spending Review. It’s currently estimated that more than 8 million adults in England have numeracy skills lower than those expected of a 9-year-old, and that by the age of 30, people with poor numeracy skills are more than twice as likely to be unemployed as their peers. Good numeracy skills are estimated to contribute over £200bn in value to the UK economy.
- All local areas in the United Kingdom will receive funding to deliver bespoke adult numeracy programmes in their area from April next year.
- Adults who don’t already have a GCSE grade C/4 or higher in Maths will be able to access free courses that fit around their lives.
- Employers who could benefit from boosting their workforce’s skills will be able to work with their Local Authority and training providers to deliver maths GCSEs or functional skills qualifications and to design and deliver bespoke programmes for their workforce, with no cost to them.
- A new digital platform, to be launched next year, will give access to numeracy training on demand. Anyone over 19 and working towards a maths GCSE or functional skills qualification, or just wanting to brush up on their skills, will be able to access the platform, which will provide free online tutorials and courses.